You are here

Doctoral Concentration in Creative Writing

Creative Writing at UL

[Audience at Vi Khi Nao reading at Beausoleil Books
Audience at Vi Khi Nao reading at Beausoleil Books.

The UL Lafayette Creative Writing Program invites you to join our close, energetic community of faculty and students.

Generalist Program

Our Ph.D. in English is unique in that it is a generalist program. That means you as a student gain broad expertise in a variety of creative writing genres: fiction, poetry, drama, and creative non-fiction. It also means that you’ll strengthen your understanding of literature, and develop solid pedagogical practice by instructing undergraduate courses in rhetoric and composition. There will also be opportunities to teach creative writing, literature, and design your own special topics courses.

The generalist program ensures graduates concentrating in Creative Writing who opt for academic positions are qualified to teach in several areas. Graduates who choose careers outside of the academy will have experience managing a classroom while teaching and designing their own courses.


Assistantships are available in the Ernest J. Gaines Center, the Paul and Lulu Hilliard University Art Museum, and within the English Department. Graduate teaching assistantships give you the chance to teach first-year writing, sophomore literature survey courses, a creative writing workshop, and a literature course of your own design. Three-year university fellowships with lighter teaching loads are also available.

You will be able to gain professional development experience through working on the University-supported in-house print journal The Southwestern Review, and our online literary journal Rougarou. Students also read at our Thursday Night Reading Series (TNRS), and often attend the annual Association of Writers & Writing Programs (AWP) conference where our graduate creative writers host an annual off-site reading. Creative writers also have the opportunity to present their work at the Global Souths conference we put on each year through a creative plenary and creative panels.

In addition to our great faculty, and writer-in-residence, the UL Lafayette Creative Writing Program is enhanced by the Deep South Reading Series. Recent guests include: Maurice Carlos Ruffin, Katie Jean Shinkle, Terese Svoboda, Rodrigo Toscano, Asiya Wadud, Matthew Salesses, Vi Khi Nao, Clemonce Heard, and Wandeka Gayle.

Apply to Write with Us

In addition to the PhD in English application requirements, the department requires a creative writing portfolio. You should submit a creative writing sample of 15-20 pages as part of their application directly to the Graduate Coordinator for Incoming Students, Dr. Leah Orr at PDFs are preferred. Please specify the genre: Fiction, Poetry, Drama, Creative Nonfiction, or Hybrid work.

Read more info about applying.

Resources and Links

The English Department’s Thursday Night Reading Series (TNRS) features weekly readings of original poetry, fiction, creative nonfiction, drama, and experimental works from UL graduate students and faculty. Watch the video to see our graduate students share their work and visit the TNRS Facebook page to learn more.